• May 29 - June 2, 2019
  • Public exhibition: May 4, 2019
  • Shanghai


Critica festival is back!

This year, more than 30 artists come together over 5 days to make an impact through different forms of art, ranging from film to illustration and from storytelling to dance. Everyone is invited to discuss, participate, enjoy, and create with us.



An essential part of the festival, Critica exhibition brings you 5 artists and one studio whose work explore gender, sexuality, indigenous cultures, ethnicity, the visually impaired, and a series of illustrations of world issues. Zurita will also exhibit their photography series “Designed by Success,” with the people of the Inclusion Factory.

The exhibition will start on May 29 in H27, and will move to 1900LOFT from May 31st.


13:00 – 16:00 Moving Public Exhibtion

We exhibit six self-portraits of blind people, created in cooperation with Ahh Studio. The photographs will not be exhibited in a gallery or museum, but will be shown on the streets, in parks, and in public transport.

Start at 13:00 in Zhongshan Park

19:00 – 22:00 Festival Opening

H27: 27 Hengshan Rd #201, Shanghai

Free admission

We will open the second edition
of CRITICA: Arts for People festival with four exhibitions and seven
poetry performances in Shanghai’s versatile gallery space H27!


  • Luke Gray is an illustrator who works with indigenous people and lost
    traditional techniques. His exhibition portrays indigenous tribes in
    China, through 6 prints in A3. Luke Gray’s works will be availble for
    sale after the exhibition!
  • Nicoco has been running the series CELEBRATE WOMEN for the past four
    years. It asks women to respond to the question, “what empowers you?”
    The series is open to any person who identifies as a woman, and features
    women from all over the globe. In the last year her series has focused
    on the Shanghai LGBTQ+ Community.
  • PRO*****DA XXI, an exhibition by Cenly and R. in which current issues are represented through illustration.
  • Eleanor Moseman is a photographer and storyteller who has  been working
    with women in the west of China for the last 10 years. Eleanor Moseman’s
    work will be exhibited in different forms in CRITICA festival.


Poets from all over the world will perform poetry throughout the evening in different languages:

  • Nianci Li in Chinese
  • Patrick Schiefen in English
  • Yaye in Swahili
  • 倪颖杰 in Chinese Sign Language
  • Ali Sedighi in English
  • Maria Nieves & Sofia Caruncho Llaguno in Spanish

20:00 – 22:00 Discussion hosted by Elevate

1900 LOFT: 465 Dingxi Road, Shanghai // 定西路465号


Discussion Language: English (Chinese support available)


How can art promote inclusion? We have invited three artists who are part

of Critica 2019 to discuss this topic. What does inclusion mean to them,
and how does their personal work deal with this topic? 



Audience participation is strongly encouraged in this panel discussion hosted by Elevate, so come & discuss with us!




Nicoco has been running the photography series CELEBRATE WOMEN for the past four years. This series asks women to respond to the question, “what empowers you?”and it is open to any person who identifies as a woman, featuring women from all over the globe. In the last year her series has  focused on the Shanghai LGBTQ+ community.

Viola NoOne

Viola NoOne devotes herself to be a forever life student, with a motto of ruthless honesty and full being. She improvises with multi-cultural practices and traces them back to their essence, which includes elements of Zen, Reiki, Tai Chi, chanting, Shamanism, and ecstatic dance. Viola explores common phenomena of life and finds the spirit behind it, adding an artistic touch. At the end of 2018, she founded Life Improviser platform, which encourages an experimental & creative lifestyle for full-living.

Federica Buonsante

Federica Buonsante works as a researcher, author, educator, and artist in Shanghai. Her research focuses mainly on Public Art, which she studies from a comparative perspective, addressing universalities and cultural specificities in China and Italy.



8PM–11:30PM Queer Queries: Gender identity & Drag Workshop

MusicLAB Room 102, Building 8, No. 31 Middle Wulumuqi Road

Gender is the main topic of Critica’s Friday night. We kick-off with an exploration of gender through a drag king workshop (open to everyone) by Anna Leigh Mohr, and after, we film a live shadow documentary in which we will discuss gender and its different expressions.

09:00 – 00:00 15 hours of Art & Inclusion

09:00 – 11:00 Poetry in the Park

Fuxing park – free activity with Julia Hernández Sang

Rise early to join Critica’s Poetry in the Park in which we re-create and re-invent traditional Chinese poems together with local calligraphy artists.

11:00 – 13:00  Sound Healing Workshop

1900LOFT – 80RMB with Karp, Ankar Arken and Leslie Yao

Self and community healing is an important step towards having inclusive spaces. On Saturday June 1 the Sound Healing workshop will immerse you on a sound journey in which you will discover and explore your inner earing and listening, and understand how the sounds around and within can be healing.

13:00 – 15:00 Theatre Workshop

1900LOFT – 80RMB with Grass Stage Theatre

In this workshop, different basic acting exercises will guide you in creating short plays which explore inclusion, and in discovering the empowering role that acting can bring to all of us.

13:00 – 15:00 Illustration Workshop

1900LOFT – 80RMB with Michael Robinson

How much goes unseen? How many go unnoticed? In the Illustrate for Visibility workshop you will engage in a conversation about how to represent people fairly through illustration. Afterwards, you will be taken on a tour; not to remarkable places, but instead this tour will challenge you to discover scenes that generally go unnoticed, and to illustrate them!

13:00 – 15:00 Identity Workshop

1900LOFT – 80 RMB with Maria Christoforatou

In this workshop, we invite you to examine different identities and assumptions of yourself and others, in order to strengthen understanding of who we are and how our identities interact with the world, through painting.

14:00 – 17:00 Inclusive City Workshop

1900LOFT – free activity with Julia Hernández Sang & Khaoula Houssini

In this ongoing workshop we will reflect on what an inclusive community is, dicuss, and represent this inclusive community through painting on used canvas. Come & create with us any time between 2PM and 5PM!

15:00 – 17:00 Storytelling Workshop

1900LOFT – 80RMB with Unravel

Sharing personal stories can be a very powerful tool to bring visibility to
issues or to generate understanding of people’s lives, but how do you
present your story in a captivating and connective way? Storytelling
platform Unravel will lead a workshop that explores the ways personal
storytelling can be used to promote visibility and inclusion.


15:00 – 17:00 Share/Care

1900LOFT – free activity by Federica Buonsante

Share/Care is a multi-disciplinary workshop that aims at reinterpreting the meaning of artistic production and human relationships. You will be asked to share any creative product, with only two rules: 1) You can only share personal creations and 2) Any other form of technological contact is forbidden. This workshop is open to everyone!

17:15 – 17:30 Handpan performance

Feiyu, a handpan player and instrument maker, will give a mesmerizing handpan performance.

17:30 – 20:00 Jam

Greg Byler & Friends will keep up the vibes of the day with a music jam in which everyone is welcome to participate.

20:00 – 21:00 Behaviorism performance by Life Improviser

Life Improviser is a platform about empowering events & arts for full living. Life Improviser will give a contemporary behaviorism performance, in which the audience is triggered to see similarities and connect with each other.

21:00 – 22:00 E3

E3 is an audio-visual duo formed in Shanghai in 2019 by Elekezem and Sandancunren. They create immersive-narrative, and audio-visual experiences by merging electronic music and surrealistic real-time generated visuals together. Their concept stems from their concern about the upcoming future world and future life of human beings.

22:00 – 00:00 DJ Rafa Paella

Based in Shanghai since 2016, Rafa Paella has quickly become one of the stalwarts of Shanghai’s underground electronic music scene. He is always on the lookout for innovative sounds, obscure records, andlong- forgotten gems, blending them together to create something unique and memorable, taking the audience on a journey defying genre boundaries. In Critica Festival, Rafa Paella will keep us dancing with Downtempo and house.

14:00 – 17:00 Film Competition & Critica Closing

The Pearl

Independent Chinese and foreign filmmakers have submitted their films, and the five selected short movies will be screened in the beautiful Hongkou theater the Pearl!

In line with CRITICA’s values, all short films deal with the theme social inclusion.

The audience will vote for their favorite, and the winner of the competition will receive 70% of the day’s tickets income.